'Dear India, That's My Team and Those Are My Boys': Proud Sunil Chhetri Reacts After Shock Draw With Qatar
Few gave India any chance of coming away with anything but a defeat to 2022 hosts Qatar, but stout defending and some superb goalkeeping from Gurpreet Singh Sandhu helped them earn a point.
Sunil Chhetri (Photo Credit: PTI)
New Delhi: India captain Sunil Chhetri was extremely proud of the way the Blue Tigers fought valiantly against Qatar and held the Asian champions to a goal-less draw in the second match of the FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifying in Doha.
Chhetri missed the match with a fever but was thrilled with the team's gutsy display. "THAT is my team and THOSE are my boys! Cannot describe how proud I am at this moment," tweeted the 35-year-old.
"Not a big result for the table, but in terms of a fight, as big as it can get. Huge credit to the coaching staff and the dressing room."
Dear India, THAT is my team and THOSE are my boys! Cannot describe how proud I am at this moment. Not a big result for the table, but in terms of a fight, as big as it can get. Huge credit to the coaching staff and the dressing room. #QATIND— Sunil Chhetri (@chetrisunil11) September 10, 2019
India face a uphill task to make it to their first World Cup finals this time around but the 0-0 draw in Doha against Qatar has filled them with pride. Igor Stimac's team, ranked 103rd in the world, have given a good account of themselves in their first two matches in Group E. They led Oman 1-0 in their opener last week but conceded two goals in the last eight minutes to go down 2-1 at home.
Few gave the side any chance of coming away with anything but a defeat to 2022 hosts Qatar, a team ranked 41 places higher than India, but stout defending and some superb goalkeeping from Gurpreet Singh Sandhu helped them earn a point.
"Definitely a night to remember ..." Sandhu tweeted after the match, adding that he hoped the result would inspire them against Bangladesh and Afghanistan, the other teams in Group E, both of whom are ranked lower than India.
"The effort, the will and the guts shown by everyone in the team was truly inspiring. This result will help us to keep grow as a team and as a nation."
Qatar enjoyed 63% possession and had 13 shots on target but Sandhu was unbeatable. "We have played just two matches, and we have played well, that too against two powerful teams," the goalkeeper said.
Qatar top the group with four points from two matches, one ahead of Oman and Afghanistan. The eight group winners and the four best runners-up advance to the third round of qualification for the World Cup.
With inputs from Reuters and IANS.
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